Is Sushi Okay For Someone With Type 2 Diabetes?

Being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes can come as a bit of a shock. In truth, news like that can really put you into a bit of a tailspin. You may not have an inkling of what type of ramifications that this would bring about for your day-to-day life. However, a diagnosis of Type 2 Diabetes is not nearly as dire as it may sound. In fact, by making a few simple adjustments to your diet and exercise program you can ensure that you will be able to manage your Diabetes without too much strife.

When looking at how to adjust your diet you may come up with some questions regarding specific types of food. Being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes does not mean that you cannot indulge in the foods that you have previously enjoyed. In fact, sushi is probably one of the most speculated foods for those dealing with diabetes. So, Is Sushi Okay for Someone with Type 2 Diabetes?

Sushi has become more and more popular. Part of that popularity is due to the nutritional values in sushi. Sushi is chocked full of lean proteins and vegetables. Not only that, but sushi is an incredibly beautiful type of food. There is something incredibly fun about eating it, and it has become a culinary wave that has been sweeping the nation.

However, those who suffer from Type 2 Diabetes need to approach sushi with a bit of caution. Those who are diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes typically have diets that are full of high glucose foods that cause their blood sugar to be off kilter. White rice is a perfect example of those high glucose foods that can prove detrimental to your blood sugar levels. Most traditional pieces of nigiri sushi and sushi rolls are constructed with a fair amount of this rice. It is important that you take into account how much of that rice you are eating when you are having sushi. Additionally, not all rolls are constructed with healthy ingredients. In fact, you will often find some very elaborate rolls that are filled with fried ingredients or heavily sugared sauces.

There is an exception to this logic within the realm of sushi. Sashimi, is actually sushi without the rice. This is a perfect option for those who tend to have a diet that is too rich in high glycemic foods.

So the answer to the question “Is Sushi Okay for Someone with Type 2 Diabetes?” is yes and no. Yes, sushi is a healthy alternative to other types of foods. However, you have to be careful about it because there are hidden health dangers in it. As with most foods, the key is to eat in moderation. Too much of anything can never be good for you!

Symptoms of the Onset of Diabetes

The most common symptom my patients have of the onset of diabetes is: none!

Most of my patients are adults who I see on a regular basis, many of whom receive blood testing periodically. Patients who are at risk for diabetes – who are overweight or have a family history of diabetes – are often diagnosed on routine blood tests done for other reasons. Usually these patients exhibit no specific symptoms.

Historically, excess thirst, frequent urination, weight loss, and increased hunger have been cited as classic diagnostic signs. Sweet tasting urine is another, but modern day doctors rarely use this diagnostic test. (Most doctors don’t know how regular urine tastes, anyway.) The latin words, diabetes mellitus, mean “run-through honey.”

However, by the time a patient’s blood sugar is high enough to cause these symptoms, diabetes is usually quite advanced.

What causes thirst and frequent urination in a diabetic? The kidney normally is capable of absorbing all the glucose that flows through it. However, above a certain threshold, usually around a blood sugar of 200 to 300 mg/dL, the kidney can no longer absorb all the blood glucose, resulting in the sugar “spilling” into the urine. Glucose in the urine acts as a diuretic, causing increased volume of urination and therefore increased urinary frequency.

Because some of the calories from diet run right through a patient with diabetes, weight loss can occur, especially in children with Type I diabetes. Type I diabetic children tend to be thin and eat more to make up for what they are losing. Most Type II diabetics (which accounts for most adult diabetes) are overweight to begin with and may not exhibit weight loss. Some are happy if weight loss occurs and therefore delay seeking medical attention. Type II diabetes is no longer a disease limited to adults. Overweight teens and pre-teens are also at risk.

The current definition of diabetes is a fasting blood glucose reading of only 126 mg/dL, much lower than the level where patients exhibit the above symptoms. However, recognizing subtler symptoms of diabetes may lead to the diagnosis at blood sugar levels below those that produce thirst and frequent urination. Sometimes a patient will complain of fatigue (mental or physical). In women, recurrent vaginal yeast infections or a yeast skin rash under the breast may be associated with diabetes. Occasionally men complain of a yeast rash in the groin area. Some patients describe mild discomfort urinating or a change in vision.

The laboratory definition of diabetes has changed over the past few decades, with the threshold for diagnosis dropping lower and lower. Along with this, treatment goals for blood sugar now aim at normal or nearly normal blood glucose levels. With our improved understanding of how obesity leads to diabetes, insulin resistance is now recognized as a pre-diabetic condition.

Rather than wait for symptoms to occur, if you are at risk for diabetes, check with your doctor, who may want to perform simple blood testing. Or take advantage of your local health fair or chain pharmacies, who often offer free diabetic testing.

Copyright 2010 Cynthia J. Koelker, MD

Things You Need If You Have Diabetes And Love Travelling

Diabetes currently affects over 120 million people across the globe. These are people with lives which they wish to live to the best of their abilities.

Having diabetes does not mean one should avoid doing things they wish to do in life – especially travelling. As long as your sugar is controlled, your doctor should have no problem giving you the go ahead with your travel plans.

But when you do travel, it is always a good idea to carry a few things with you. Here are some of the essential things you need to carry.

1. Shoes

Make sure you carry shoes that are comfortable and support your arch well. Foot care is of utmost importance in the management of diabetes. Foot injuries can lead to infections that require prolonged courses of antibiotics to treat them. Choose a good quality shoe, ideally a branded one with a soft sole and comfortable fit.

2. Glucose powder

Living with diabetes means that there are times when your blood sugar levels will not be under control. Some times, sugar levels can drop well below the normal range, leading to symptoms of hypoglycemia. It is easy to treat hypoglycemia in an instant by ingesting a fistful of glucose powder. Carry this with you where ever you go in your back pack. Alternatively, give the glucose powder to your travel buddy to carry with them.

3. A glucose checking device

Knowing when to call for help is important in diabetes. There are times when you might feel a little awkward but are not sure whether this is due to your sugar levels or now. If you carry with you a glucometer i.e. a glucose checking device, you can ensure that you can keep an eye on your blood sugar levels in a matter of seconds. This can help you seek medical attention sooner rather than later.

4. Medical ID

Having a medical ID tag over your wrist or in your wallet can be a life saver. In the event of an emergency, a passer by can easily identify that you have diabetes and may be able to assist you in the right way. Not just that, you will also be able to help paramedical and medical staff in emergency situations. Your doctor will be able to provide you a medical ID tag.

5. Your prescription

Your prescription is probably the most important thing for you to carry with you when you travel. It has your details in it and also contains a list of additional medications you may be taking.

Closing remarks

These 5 items are important if you have diabetes and are thinking of travelling. Don’t let diabetes get in the way of you leading a normal life.

Diabetes Diet – The Visual Plate Method

The Diet for Diabetes is straightforward yet you need to know how to control the carbohydrates. How do you know what foods to eat? Maybe you like rice or pasta or grits or other carb foods that need insulin to process these foods.

How much of the carbohydrate or carb (CHO) foods can I eat? Well that depends if you would need to lose weight, gain weight or maintain your weight.

I think the most prudent way to eat foods you really enjoy and at the same time not putting too much strain on the pancreas to spit out insulin, is to eat in moderation. Type 2 Diabetes Diet or Diabetes 2 diet is basically the diet I am referring to.

What I mean by moderation is using the Visual Plate Technique. This is one way of calculating your intake, as well as how much carbs or carb foods you include with your meal.

So what does the Visual Plate Technique mean. For a Type 2 Diabetes Diet means that you look at your plate with your foodstuff in it. If all you see is rice, or grits or sweet foods as the greater piece of your plate, then you are way off base. Diabetes 2 diet contain a green leafy vegetable or salad, Protein foodstuff (eggs , meat, fish, cheese) and a smaller portion of carbohydrate vegetables or rice, pasta or whatever other carbs.

Since I work as a visiting nurse, I try to explain to the patients that you don’t have to go to extremes. Diets for Diabetes doesn’t matter what culture and foods you like and that tastes great. It matters that you somewhat control your carbohydrate vegetables (peas, carrots, corn, peas, potatoes) and your CHO foods (rice, pasta, and other carb foods) with each meal. Diet for Diabetes means more control over the CHO you eat.

If you make your mind up you and want peas and carrots, then eat very small amount rice or pasta. If you eat green leafy vegetables, then you can eat extra rice or pasta.

With Type 2 Diabetes Diet, protein foods do not raise your blood sugar, so you can add extra fish, eggs, meat, etc with your meals. As long as your cholesterol isn’t too high (eggs and meats) and you are not a Kidney patient, there should be no reason why you can’t eat extra protein foods. Protein foods in the diet for diabetes is that the protein contains its own natural fat which actually helps curb your appetite.

Whenever you eat a meal or snack, it should always include a small amount of protein that has its natural fat. The protein provides its own natural fat and tends to keep your blood sugar stable so it doesn’t spike and then drop immediately. That can happen if one has a piece of fruit and no protein with it. Also, eating just a piece of fruit can make you hungrier. That’s where the protein helps to curb the appetite.

I also tell my patients not to drink any juice unless your blood sugar is low. It is better to eat the fruit than drink the juice.

As always, you should get to consult with your doctor before changing your present diet.